Want personalized picks that fit your family?

Set preferences to see our top age-appropriate picks for your kids.

Get age-based picks

Then Came You

Movie review by
Sandie Angulo Chen, Common Sense Media
Then Came You Movie Poster Image
Charming stars save clichéd story; some drinking, sex.
  • NR
  • 2019
  • 97 minutes

Parents say

No reviews yetAdd your rating

Kids say

No reviews yetAdd your rating

We think this movie stands out for:

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Positive Messages

Focuses on not taking life for granted, making sure to seize the day. Promotes courage, honest communication, stepping outside of your comfort zone.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Skye is vibrant and full of life, despite illness, but also somewhat of a stereotypical Manic Pixie Dream Girl whose purpose seems more about helping Calvin than having her own agency. Calvin is frightened of nearly everything but finally feels ready to live because of friendship with Skye. Calvin's family is loving, supportive. Izzy is kind, generous.

Violence

Upsetting scenes include when Skye collapses, and she overhears her parents discussing her condition. In last quarter of movie, she no longer wears a wig, has to wear a headscarf, which makes her look somewhat sicker. She's also hospitalized.

Sex

Couples kiss at a party. Skye loses her virginity on a locker room floor; she's shown in bra; the guy is shirtless on top of her. It seems like a couple is going to kiss, but they don't at the last minute. Calvin and Izzy kiss briefly.

Language

Occasional use of words including "s--t," "bats--t," "f--k," "Jesus," "dummy," "wanks," "balls out," "bollocks," "pissed."

Consumerism

Ford, Converse.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Skye gets drunk at a high school party. Cops offer her marijuana from a seized stash.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Then Came You is an indie dramedy about a 19-year-old hypochondriac (Asa Butterfield) who befriends a terminally ill 17-year-old (Maisie Williams) and joins her as she completes her bucket list. The movie is likely to appeal to teens, particularly those drawn to stories featuring a Manic Pixie Dream Girl character arc. Unlike other movies about illness and dying, this one focuses on a touching platonic friendship rather than a central romance. You can still expect kissing and one sex scene involving virginity loss, but it's not graphic beyond showing a young woman in her underwear and a young man shirtless. There's also some strong language ("f--k," "s--t," etc.), underage drinking/drunkenness at a party, pot being offered to a minor, and a couple of upsetting scenes related to illness. In the end, the story promotes compassion, empathy, and not taking life for granted.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say

There aren't any reviews yet. Be the first to review this title.

There aren't any reviews yet. Be the first to review this title.

What's the story?

THEN CAME YOU stars Asa Butterfield as Calvin, a 19-year-old hypochondriac who works with his father and older brother as a baggage handler at an Upstate New York airport. Calvin, who dropped out of college, meets Skye (Maisie Williams), a terminally ill high school senior, at a cancer support group he had no reason to attend. Ebullient Skye takes a liking to the socially awkward, introverted Calvin and convinces him to join her in completing her bucket list. In exchange, Skye offers close friendship and tips on how to bring Calvin out of his shell and not take life for granted. One of the ways she helps Calvin is by encouraging him to finally get to know his work crush, flight attendant Izzy (Nina Dobrev).

Is it any good?

Talented young performers rescue this "dying teen" story from being a purely predictable, tear-jerking coming-of-age drama. Williams' Skye is a classic Manic Pixie Dream Girl, with her exuberant chutzpah, colorful hair, and doe-eyed persuasiveness. But she seems to exist solely to motivate withdrawn, reclusive Calvin to get outside his head and not let life pass him by -- because some people, like Skye, don't have a lot of life left to enjoy. Several times, the movie makes it seem that, despite Calvin's crush on the older and seemingly unattainable Izzy, he'll eventually fall for Skye, even though she has a devastating prognosis.

But audiences shouldn't be easily deceived: This is not The Fault in Our Stars or Now Is Good or Me and Earl and the Dying Girl or Me Before You. This is not a weepy romance; it's about how the story's central friendship impacts Calvin and helps him do more with his life. That can be frustrating, since Skye has less agency in the story than Calvin, and lot of her "to die list" goes by in a montage of sweet adventure. One of the best parts of the movie is actually Ken Jeong as a local police officer who, along with his partner, keeps bumping into Skye and Calvin and ends up helping them cross items off her list. While Then Came You isn't a standout entry in the "dying teen" genre, there's just enough heart to make it a serviceable (if sappy) pick.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the characters' friendships in Then Came You. What brings them together? What's the true measure of a real friendship? Can you think of other movies that portray powerful friend relationships?

  • How does the movie depict sex? How is it different here from how it's often portrayed in other teen movies/books? Parents, talk to your teens about your own values regarding sex and relationships.

  • Skye has been described as a Manic Pixie Dream Girl. Do you know what that means? If so, do you agree with the assessment? Do you think she's a realistic portrayal of a teenager dying of cancer?

  • How does the story show the importance of communication and courage? Are those important character strengths?

  • How is drinking depicted? Are there realistic consequences? Why does that matter?

Movie details

Character Strengths

Find more movies that help kids build character.

Themes & Topics

Browse titles with similar subject matter.

For kids who love friendship stories

Our editors recommend

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

See how we rate

About these links

Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization, earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes when you use our links to make a purchase. Thank you for your support.

Read more

Our ratings are based on child development best practices. We display the minimum age for which content is developmentally appropriate. The star rating reflects overall quality and learning potential.

Learn how we rate